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Human Evolution Falsified

The title of this entry comes from the data, not from the claims being made about it.  The cover story in Cell1 this week has set off a flurry of startling headlines: EurekAlert pronounces, “Evidence that human brain evolution was a special event” and “University of Chicago researchers discovered that humans are a ‘privileged’ evolutionary […]

Flagellar Oars Beat Like Galley Slaves In Synchronization

The Dec. 14 issue of Current Biology1 investigated another mystery in the operation of eukaryotic flagella: Flagella are microtubule-based structures that propel cells through the surrounding fluid.  The internal structure of a flagellum consists of nine parallel doublet microtubules arranged around a central pair of singlet microtubules (Figure 1).  Force for propulsion is provided by […]

Archaeologists Discover Biblical Pool of Siloam

MSNBC News reports that a team of archaeologists working in an Arab portion of Jerusalem believe they have located the pool of Siloam, where according to the Gospel of John, ch. 9, Jesus healed a blind man.     In other archaeology news, MSNBC also reported that the Israeli Antiquities Authority is calling an alabaster […]

Huygens Heads for Titan

At about 7:25 p.m. JPL time Christmas Eve, anxious scientists and engineers watching their monitors received bits from 800 million miles away, indicating that the Cassini spacecraft had successfully released the Huygens Probe over an hour earlier, with no faults or problems, right on schedule.  In mission control, engineers with Santa hats could be seen […]

Paleoanthropologists Fight Tooth and Nail

Ann Gibbons, reporter for Science, seems to enjoy watching the fights about human ancestry.  At Science Now, she began a news item about an alleged fossil human ancestor with a joke: How many paleoanthropologists does it take to locate a molar on the correct side of a fossil jawbone?  The short answer to this joke, […]

Galaxy Evolution Explorer Finds Living Fossils

Some galaxies are 10 times brighter in ultraviolet than others, and are thought to be “young” galaxies undergoing violent star formation with frequent supernova explosions.  In theory, they populated the early universe but should have quieted down by now.  The Galaxy Evolution Explorer, an ultraviolet wide-field orbiting telescope, launched April 2003, has just made a […]

Da Vinci Code Not Gospel Truth, Says National Geographic

National Geographic News took a break from its usual nature articles to discuss the popular novel The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown, and examine its historical claims.  “No Gospel” in the story, it decides; while giving Brown’s theory a hearing, it concludes there is no evidence Mary Magdalene married Jesus, that they had a […]

Did Early Islam Promote Science?

Nature published a news feature this week crediting a religion, Islam, with advancing science, but saying nothing about the Christian roots of science.1  It begins, Western science owes much to Islam’s golden age – a debt that is often forgotten.  To help redress the balance, Fuat Sezgin has reconstructed a host of scientific treasures using […]

Late Bloomer Galaxy Just Now Getting Into Star Formation?

According to a story in New Scientist, a “young” galaxy is just now starting its process of star formation.  Most galaxies formed more than 10 billion years ago.  Those born later tend to be fashioned from recycled gas rich in metals that were forged by previous generations of stars.  But astronomers Trinh Thuan of the […]

Cretaceous Temperature Estimates Point Out Flaws in Climate Models

Nature1 this week described evidence for high temperatures in the Arctic during the Cretaceous that it termed “astounding.”  Based on work by Jenkins et al. that Arctic waters were 15°C, as warm as modern coastal waters off France and Maryland. For a region blanketed in darkness for half of the year, the Arctic Ocean was […]

Introducing the Stretch & Squish Theory of Evolution

Evolution is too slow if theorists rely on single point mutations, say two biologists from U. of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, who published their ideas in PNAS1 (see summary on EurekAlert).  Instead, evolution proceeds by rapidly distorting, stretching and squishing what is already there, they claim.     They claim that even Darwin knew that […]

For Better Workouts, Head for the Hills

Science News1 reported on a study by the American Heart Association that shows hiking in the mountains is good for you.  Experiments on people hiking in the Austrian Alps showed that going uphill, the body improves the processing of fats called triglycerides, and walking downhill improves the processing of glucose sugar.  45 volunteers who were […]

Debate:  Should Schools Teach the Controversy Over Darwinism?

The San Francisco Chronicle published a written debate between Stanford evolutionist Robert Sapolsky and Discovery Institute fellows Stephen Meyer and John Angus Campbell.  The subject is whether schools should “teach the controversy” over evolution.  Both articles can be read on the Discovery Institute website.     Meanwhile, the ACLU is suing another school district, this […]

Did Martians Win the War of the Worlds?

In the H.G. Wells version, the Martian invaders with their tripod machines and death rays, wreaking havoc on Earth, were defeated by Earth bacteria.  The new scientific plot envisioned by scientists, reported on Space.com, is that the Martians had the bacteria, and invaded Earth with it to either conquer Earth life or spread it onto […]

Monkeys Have No Ear for Music

Consonance and dissonance have no meaning to monkeys, studies have shown.  Nature Science Update reported on experiments on cotton-top tamarins showing that, unlike humans, they do not find consonant tones more pleasing than dissonant ones. “If you want to look at the evolution of music it’s important to do these types of studies,” says Laurel […]
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